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Group to replace Bush in marriage ads, ‘move to new and different voices’

Thursday, February 21, 2013
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DALLAS — A pro-marriage equality group says it’s “sorry” former First Lady Laura Bush does not want to be included its national advertising campaign featuring prominent people speaking about same-sex marriage, and said its campaign will “now move to new and different voices.”

Laura Bush
AP file photo by LM Otero

The Respect for Marriage Coalition said Thursday that it appreciates Bush’s previous comments, telling CNN in 2010 that “when couples are committed to each other and love each other then they ought to have the same sort of rights that everyone has.”

But after a spokeswoman for Bush said earlier today that the former First Lady objected to her inclusion in the campaign, the coalition has agreed to remove her from the campaign, which includes print, television and online ads.

“Mrs. Bush did not approve of her inclusion in this advertisement nor is she associated in any way with the group that made the ad,” Anne MacDonald, a spokeswoman for the former first lady, wrote in a statement Thursday.

The campaign video included a 5-second clip of Bush’s 2010 interview with Larry King, and also features clips of former Vice President Dick Cheney and former Secretary of State Colin Powell.

After the coalition released its statement Thursday, MacDonald said Bush would have no further comment.

The coalition, which is planning to spend $1 million on the national campaign, said a new ad will begin running this weekend featuring former Marine Cpl. Craig Stowell, who says that after finding out that his brother was gay, he “wanted the same rights for him.”

“He was the best man at my wedding and I want to be the best man at his,” said Stowell, who notes he is a Republican.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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